The Story of our Logo
The Story Behind The Choice Of Our Logo Is Quite Interesting !
Our Bhajan Group numbering about100 people, organizes each year in the month of December, a Spiritual Festival honouring Shirdi Sai Baba. One of the chief intentions we have for the event concerns ‘The Welfare of the World’ –‘Loka Kalyana’ in Sanskrit. Other objectives may include seeking support for the construction of a temple; support for social service and so on. The religious observances are usually organized in a spacious marriage hall and include Rudrabhisheka, various Homas (performed in previous years), Vishnu Sahasranama recital and Noon Aarathi followed by lunch (Prasad) served for over two thousand people. Those days the homas were conducted outside the hall and in open air and a professional photographer would record the various events as they happened.
That particular year, the photographer was recording the events happening inside the hall when an elderly man was supposed to have drawn his attention to the Homas that were to commence outside. He is supposed to have asked the photographer to proceed thence “as that is where the action would be taking place!” Accordingly the cameraman went out towards the Homa-kunda and casually, without much premeditation, clicked a photograph of a tray of camphor being lit as a preparation to ignite the main fire of the Homa.
The photographer then proceeded to check whether a good image was recorded when he was struck by the shape of the flame that surprisingly resembled Sai Baba – complete, with the Kafni, and the head-scarf falling over the shoulder in a rear-lateral perspective! The photographer was indeed impressed by this remarkable coincidence, and when he searched for the elderly man who had directed him to the homa kunda, he was nowhere to be seen.
When we had to choose a logo for our organization, our memories of this incident were aroused and we explored the possibilities whether Baba’s presence in the flame could form a meaningful logo as the whole project was inspired by Baba. A talented photographer masked the flame using a popular software, ensuring that the veracity of the image was not lost, and he placed it in a black background enveloped in an oval.
The ‘flame’ and the ‘black background’ have a deep symbolic meaning! The word ‘GURU’ has two parts to it – ‘GU’, meaning darkness, and ‘RU’, meaning dispeller. So GURU is one who dispels darkness. The darkness could be of ignorance or lack of understanding.
In this image the flame represents ‘light’ and is the dispeller of darkness represented by the blackness that surrounds it in the logo. Significantly the flame is in the shape of our Sadhguru Sai Baba and he removes the blackness surrounding Him.. Besides, the picture is more appealing when the flame is contrasted in a black background.
Secondly, in many religious and spiritual traditions of the world, FIRE is considered to be a PURIFIER. Zoroastrians worship fire, and so do Hindus to a lesser extent. Fire is supposed to burn up one’s sins and purify a man. It is common knowledge that to extract noble metals like gold and silver, the ore has to pass through fire. Iron has to be smelted using fire. Even iron products are ‘tempered’ and strengthened using fire. Similarly human beings are supposed to become purified when they undergo scorching difficulties. ‘Baptism by Fire’ is a well known English expression. Even Sita had to undergo a fire test!
The fire in the logo is doubly significant – the ‘dispeller of darkness’ and the ‘purifier of souls’ – and when it has the shape of our GURU, who can better it?